Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944

Resource Type:

Reading Level:

    • The 1934 West Coast Longshore Strike

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 20 pages.
      Students “become” several of the social groups who participated in the 1934 Longshore Workers Strike—some of whom had to answer the question, “Which side are you on?”

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: High School
    • Burned Out of Homes and History: Unearthing the Silenced Voices of the Tulsa Race Riot

    • Teaching Activity. By Linda Christensen. 20 pages.
      Teaching about patterns of displacement and wealth inequality through the 1921 Tulsa Race Riot.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Economics, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Haiku and Hiroshima: Teaching About the Atomic Bomb
    • Haiku and Hiroshima: Teaching About the Atomic Bomb

    • Teaching Activity. By Wayne Au. 3 pages.
      Lesson for high school students on the bombing of Hiroshima using the film Barefoot Gen and haiku.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, Cold War: 1945 - 1960, 20th Century | Themes: Language Arts, US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Learning About the Unfairgrounds: A 4th-Grade Teacher Introduces Her Students to Executive Order 9066 (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Learning About the Unfairgrounds: A 4th-Grade Teacher Introduces Her Students to Executive Order 9066

    • Teaching Activity. By Katie Baydo-Reed. 10 pages.
      Students hold a “tea party” and a mock trial in preparation for reading literature about internment.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Asian American, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements |
    • A Lesson on the Japanese American Internment (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • A Lesson on the Japanese American Internment

    • Teaching Activity. By Mark Sweeting. 4 pages.
      How one teacher engaged his students in a critical examination of the language used in textbooks to describe the internment.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Asian American, Democracy & Citizenship, Education, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: High School
    • The Other Internment: Teaching the Hidden Story of Japanese Latin Americans During WWII (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • The Other Internment: Teaching the Hidden Story of Japanese Latin Americans During WWII

    • Teaching Activity. By Moé Yonamine. 18 pages.
      Poetry, photography, and text are used in this role play to teach about the seldom told history of Japanese Latin American internment during WWII.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Asian American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Immigration, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, World History/Global Studies | Reading Levels: High School
    • Southern Tenant Farmers' Union: Black and White Unite?

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 12 pages.
      Role play on farm labor organizing in the 1930s shows how racism had to be challenged to create effective worker alliances.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Labor, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • From the Jazz Age to the Uprisings of the 1930s

    • Teaching Activity. By Gayle Olson-Raymer. 20 pages.
      Questions and teaching ideas for Chapter 15 of Voices of a People’s History of the United States on the economic and social realities of the 1920s and 1930s, as well as the corresponding rise of unions and the Communist Party.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Guides | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Social Class | Reading Levels: High School
    • Labor Matters

    • Teaching Activity. By Teaching Tolerance.
      Introduces students to the role of the labor movement in securing contemporary benefits such as the 40-hour work week, the minimum wage, and workplace safety regulations.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Guides | Time Periods: Turn of the Century: 1900 - 1909, World War I: 1910 - 1919, Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • The Power In Our Hands: A Curriculum on the History of Work and Workers in the United States

    • Teaching Guide. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 1988. 184 pages.
      Role plays and writing activities project high school students into real-life situations to explore the history and contemporary reality of employment (and unemployment) in the U.S.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Guides | Time Periods: Industrial Revolution: 1877 - 1899, Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 19th Century, 20th Century | Themes: Labor | Reading Levels: High School
    • Protesting the First World War

    • Teaching Activity. By Colby Smart. 16 pages.
      Questions and teaching ideas for Chapter 14 of Voices of a People’s History of the United States on anti-war efforts during the first World War, as well as the U.S. government’s response.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Guides | Time Periods: World War I: 1910 - 1919, Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: High School
    • World War II and McCarthyism

    • Teaching Activity. By Gayle Olson-Raymer. 19 pages.
      Questions and teaching ideas for Chapter 16 of Voices of a People’s History of the United States on domestic opposition to the “good war” and the impact of McCarthyism.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Guides | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, Cold War: 1945 - 1960, 20th Century | Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: High School
    • The Forgotten Fight Against Fascism

    • Article. By William Loren Katz. 2014. If We Knew Our History Series.
      History textbooks celebrate the U.S. role in World War II—the “Good War.” But they neglect to alert students to the U.S. government’s failure to confront early fascist violence.

    • Resource Types: Articles | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Imperialism, US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, World History/Global Studies | Reading Levels: High School
    • Angel Island: Gateway to Gold Mountain

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Russell Freedman. 2014. 96 pages.
      An account of Angel Island, California, the entry point for one million Asian immigrants in the early 20th century.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: World War I: 1910 - 1919, Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Asian American, Immigration | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • The Bomb

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Howard Zinn. 2010. 100 pages.
      Zinn’s personal reflections and political analysis on the WWII bombing of Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Royan, and more.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, Cold War: 1945 - 1960, 20th Century | Themes: Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: Adult, High School
    • Civil Rights Unionism: Tobacco Workers and the Struggle for Democracy in the Mid-Twentieth-Century South

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Robert Rodgers Korstad. 2003. 576 pages.
      Chronicles the rise and fall of the union that represented thousands of African American tobacco factory workers in Winston-Salem, N.C.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Turn of the Century: 1900 - 1909, World War I: 1910 - 1919, Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: Adult
    • The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America (Book) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Richard Rothstein. 2017. 368 pages.
      A history of the laws and policy decisions passed by local, state, and federal governments that promoted racial segregation.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, Cold War: 1945 - 1960, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, Post-Civil Rights Era: 1975 - 2000, 2001 - Present, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Economics, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Death in a Promised Land: The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Scott Ellsworth. 1992. 159 pages.
      A compelling story of racial ideologies, Southwestern politics, and yellow journalism, and of an embattled Black community’s struggle to hold onto its land and freedom.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Racism & Racial Identity |
    • The Devil Is Here in These Hills

    • Book – Non-fiction. By James Green. 2015. 448 pages.
      History of one of the most protracted and deadly labor struggles in U.S. history that was waged in West Virginia.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: High School
    • "The Good War": An Oral History of World War II

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Studs Terkel. 2004. 608 pages.
      Interviews with over 120 people about WWII.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: High School
    • Helen Keller: Rebellious Spirit

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Laurie Lawlor. 2001. 176 pages.
      A biography that sheds light on Helen Keller as rebel and activist.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: World War I: 1910 - 1919, Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Women's History | Reading Levels: Grades 3-5, Grades 6-8, High School
    • A Hubert Harrison Reader

    • Book – Nonfiction. Edited by Jeffrey B. Perry. 2001. 505 pages.
      Essays by the “father of Harlem radicalism.”

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Reading Levels: Adult, High School
    • The Lincoln Brigade: A Picture History

    • Book – Non-fiction. By William Loren Katz and Marc Crawford. 2013. 96 pages.
      Interviews, documents, and photos from the first fully integrated United States army, who volunteered to help Spain defend its democracy against fascism.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Organizing, US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, World History/Global Studies | Reading Levels: Adult, Grades 6-8, High School
    • A Long Hard Journey: The Story of the Pullman Porter

    • Book – Non-fiction. By Patricia & Fredrick McKissack. 1995. 160 pages.
      A true story of the history of this powerful union effort by the African American porters.

    • Resource Types: Books: Non-Fiction | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Labor, Organizing | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8
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